By Frances Yue
Grayscale’s David LaValle said he sees potential regulatory approval of its spot bitcoin ETF, not that he expects it. This article has been corrected.
David LaValle, global head of ETFs at Grayscale Investments, said on Wednesday that he sees potential for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to approve the company’s application for a spot bitcoin ETF by July next year.
Grayscale applied with the SEC to convert its Grayscale Bitcoin Trust /zigman2/quotes/203330852/delayed GBTC -2.92% , the largest bitcoin /zigman2/quotes/31322028/realtime BTCUSD +0.02% fund in the world, into an exchange-traded fund. The company submitted the filing on Oct. 19, the same day the U.S.’s first bitcoin futures ETF ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF /zigman2/quotes/230440344/composite BITO -1.39% made its debut trading.
“We thought it was the perfect time to submit our filing,” LaValle said in MarketWatch’s “investing in crypto” virtual event on Wednesday. “Now that the bitcoin futures products were somewhat off the plate of the SEC, they would be open to look at the filings of spot-based products.”
“240 days time frame is what is in line with these type of filings,” LaValle said, speaking to the ability of the SEC to extend the review period for an ETF application to up to 240 days, before making a final decision.
“We believe that the futures market and spot market are intrinsically related,” LaValle said. “The acceptance of a bitcoin futures product means the SEC would respond to our filing of spot products.”
David Abner, global head of business development at crypto exchange Gemini, who spoke in the same panel, said that it’s hard to tell when the SEC would approve a spot bitcoin ETF. “I think it could be as early as the end of this year.”
“All of these are up to when the SEC sees its moment,” Abner said. “What we can be sure of is that they’ve taken the steps. We’re moving forward…There’s a path coming here.”
Some analysts think a spot bitcoin ETF still may be far away, as bitcoin futures have been regulated by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, while the same doesn’t apply for bitcoin trading.
When asked if ether futures ETFs could the be the next likely products to be approved, Abner said it is “one of the difficulties” facing the SEC.
“The ETF industry doesn’t lack of creative product development teams,” Abner said. “There are some concerns that the approval of a bitcoin futures ETF leads to the request for ethereum futures ETFs, and then in a short amount of time, you’d have advisers looks for a SHIB ETF as well.”
“[The SEC] They want to develop a framework so it doesn’t seem random that they approve one piece and not something else.”
Bitcoin suffered a 5% loss during the past 24 hours, recently trading at $58,820. Ether /zigman2/quotes/108573964/realtime ETHUSD +0.52% tumbled as well, recently trading at $3,984, with a 6.7% loss over the past 24 hours. Shiba Inu rallied 70% during the past 24 hours. Earlier on Wednesday, the meme coin recorded a new all-time high of $0.000087.
GBTC closed at $46.7 with a 5.5% loss. BITO closed with a 5% loss at $38.06.